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08.20.2018
Asthma Sufferers: Check Your Home for Pink Mold
If you suffer from asthma, you may take every precaution necessary to keep your respiratory system and body healthy. You may even avoid things that could make your asthma act up. But even after taking precautions and good care of your health, something could still lurk in your home that affects your asthma, including pink mold.

Pink mold (Aureobasidium) can aggravate your asthma without you being aware of it. The information below can help you find and remove pink mold from your home, as well as find treatment for your asthma if mold does aggravate it.
What Is Pink Mold?
Pink mold is actually a pink, red, or orange bacterium that grows and lives similar to mold. Like mold, Aureobasidium need oxygen, moisture, and warmth to grow. Once the bacteria find these conditions, the organisms can silently wreak havoc on your respiratory system and body.

Pink mold can be exceptionally dangerous for individuals with previous or current health issues. The bacteria can trigger breathing problems, infections, and a host of other complicated health problems. The allergy symptoms caused by pink mold can be deadly if they cover up or mimic the symptoms of an asthma attack.

Because pink mold can be extremely harmful, it's important to find and eliminate the bacteria now.
Where Can You Find Pink Mold?
One of the places that tends to harbor pink mold is the bathroom. Even if you bathe instead of shower, your bathroom can still hold a significant amount of moisture and heat. Pink mold also feeds on the fatty ingredients found in soap. The bars of soap in your bathroom could be viable food sources for pink mold.

You'll need to take a few important safety precautions before you check your bathroom for  Aureobasidium. First, cover your mouth and nose with a handkerchief or a nasal mask. You don't want to inhale Aureobasidium directly. Also, cover your hands with gloves to avoid touching any pink mold you find.

Aureobasidium can grow on any moist and warm surface in the bathroom, including your shower curtains, wall tile, grout, and sinks. You also want to check the area behind your toilet for the presence of pink mold.

If you find signs of pink mold in your bathroom, discard any bars of soap in your bathroom. Also, contact a mold remediation company for help. Like regular mold, pink mold can spread and grow in other places in the house. A remediation company can help you get rid of it.

Once you have a mold-free home, take additional steps to keep your asthma in check.
How Do You Keep Your Asthma and Health in Check?
The bacteria that causes pink mold can enter your lungs and thrive. Even if you completely removed the organisms from your home, you may still be at risk for problems later. To avoid serious complications with your health, see an allergy specialist today.

A specialist can run a series of skin and lung tests to see if you now have allergies to pink mold. The tests may require you to visit the office a couple of times before they're completed. Some tests may take up to three hours to successfully complete. An allergy doctor will take every precaution necessary to keep you comfortable during the visits.

If an allergy specialist does diagnose you with additional respiratory problems or allergies, they can establish a treatment plan for you. Your treatment plan may include taking allergy shots to control your symptoms. A doctor may also monitor your asthma to see if anything changes with it.

If you're exposed to pink mold or need more information about it, contact our offices at Allergy & Asthma Centers SC for an appointment. 
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06.19.2018
Allergic To Cats? Your Feline Allergy Questions Answered

They purr softly and it can actually promote healing, they have a lovable curious nature, and make wonderful indoor pets because they are easy to take care of. It is no wonder why 35 percent of households in the U.S. have at least one cat. Unfortunately, if you have allergies to cats, your dreams of having a feline housemate may seem impossible. 


There are actually a lot of confusing myths about being allergic to cats, which can bring about a lot of questions for those wannabe cat owners. If you suffer from cat allergies but have always wanted a kitty of your own, it is best that you get the facts. Here is a list of common questions about feline allergies and the answers you will want to know. 


Can You Be Allergic to Dogs and Not Cats?

It is a common assumption that if you are allergic to dogs, you are naturally going to be allergic to cats as well, but this does not always prove to be true. You can actually be allergic to dogs and not cats or vice versa. To understand why being only allergic to one or the other is possible, you have to understand what people are actually allergic to with cats and dogs. 


People can be allergic to pet dander, which is dried flakes from the pet's skin, and this is a problem that would likely make you allergic to either canines or felines. People can also be allergic to specific proteins in the animal’s saliva or bodily fluids. Therefore, you could be allergic to the proteins emitted from a dog and be unaffected by the proteins that are emitted by a cat. 


Can You Overcome Allergies to Cats?

You probably know someone who has claimed they were allergic to cats as a child or many years ago, but they no longer have an issue with the allergy. While rare, it is possible to overcome certain allergies, and an allergy to cats is one of those allergies that some do overcome. Your body can build up a resistance to the allergen from the cat, which can happen in a few ways. 


You may naturally build up an immunity to the cat allergen simply through repeat exposure to the animals. For example, if a child is mildly allergic to cats and visits a friend occasionally who has a cat in the house, over time their body can sometimes develop a new level of immunity. 


Immunotherapy is also a way to potentially overcome a feline allergy. Immunotherapy usually involves a series of allergy shots that are given over the course of time. These injections force your body to create an immunity to the allergen. 


Are There Cats That Will Not Cause An Allergic Reaction?

There are some situations where a certain cat breed will not trigger an allergic reaction even if you are normally allergic to felines. These cat breeds are often dubbed as being hypo-allergenic. For example, a Balinese cat produces less of the protein that cats have in their bodies that is considered an allergen, so they are less likely to cause an allergic reaction. 


The Devon Rex is also considered a good cat breed for people with allergies because they have shorter hair and barely shed at all. This can be especially good if you are allergic to pet dander because much of the dander comes along with the animal's shedded hair.


While it is frustrating to be allergic to an animal that you really do like, being allergic may not always mean you have to completely eliminate a cat from your life. Contact us at Allergy & Asthma Centers for further advice about dealing with an allergy to cats. 

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